The Magic of Aachen CHIO Begins with Alizée Froment and the Aachen Symphony Orchestra
Sunday, July 15, 2018
Last evening had all of the components that makes "Horse & Symphony" so unique: Equestrian sports, sometimes elegant and graceful, sometimes powerful and dynamic. Accompanied by impressive music played live by the Aachen Symphony Orchestra conducted by Mathis United to a sold out against the background of the sun setting at the Aachen Soers.
On late Friday evening, Alizée Froment daintily floated through the German Bank Stadium in a white angel's costume to Yann Tiersen's touching melodies from the film "The fabulous world of Amélie" on her stallion Mistral. At times "without using her wings", her horse was only equipped with a neck strap. The performance of the former Grand Prix rider got a huge applause. Her appearance was just one of the highlights at this year's edition of "Horse & Symphony" at the CHIO Aachen. Around 190 people, 65 musicians and approx. 60 horses took part in the show.
"Mystical - Fairy Tales, Myths and Heroes" The Motto of the Evening
It was as if a huge fairytale book had been opened, which all sorts of mythical creatures, magicians and fairytale figures jumped out of. Their performances were accompanied by the fantastic live music of the Aachen Symphony Orchestra Conducted by Mathis Large, répétiteur and music director at the Theater in Aachen. He did not waiver from the opportunity of exchanging his baton for a place at the piano to accompany Alizée Froment's showpiece either.
Eight Shetland ponies, formed a sulky quadrille to Hector Berlioz’s “Symphony Fantastique”, kicked off the show to the delight of the crowd. Later in the evening the riders and sulky drivers from “Fohlenhof Farbenfroh” in Allgäu put in a performance in the saddles as the “Miniature Spanish Riding School” – in homage to the quadrille of the Spanish Riding School in Vienna.
What could have been more a more fitting piece of music than Mozart’s “Little Night Music”? The crowd cheered for the aspiring young athletes from Southern Germany.
The lively “Shetties” were followed by the “fat placid guys”. Eight draught horses from the North Rhine-Westphalian State Stud and their riders brought the classic “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs to life in the form of a horse polonaise.
Then the performance brought back childhood memories for some of the spectators: Mary Poppins. The most famous nanny in the world really did fly stylishly over the Deutsche Bank Stadium with her parasol, hat and handbag made possible by the Theater Lufttanz Berlin.
At the same time the show group Lobberich portrayed a nostalgic annual market scene in the arena with jugglers from the RWTH Sports University.
Subsequently, the aspiring magician Harry Potter and his friends from the magic school Hogwarts, presented by the Dahmen Dressage Stables and the Feberberg Ballet School filled the stadium with more magic to the symphony suite “Harry Potter” by John Williams.
The vaulters also did the honours on this evening: The successful S team from RSV Neuss-Grimlinghausen presented their winning freestyle routine from the CHIO Aachen 2017 to the soundtrack of “Alice in Wonderland”.
The evening whisked the crowd off to a “Thousand and one Nights” shortly before the break. Dancers from the oriental dance group of the RWTH Sports University together with magnificent mares and their foals from the Arab Stud Ismer put in a wonderful show performance to Nikolai Rimski-Korsakow’s “Scheherazade”. After the break, two “youngsters“ conquered the arena: The 15-year-old star violinist Enzo Kok with 14-year-old dressage rider, Johanna Kullmann, winner of the Pony Tour at the Aachen Youngstars 2017, with her pony ”Casino Royale” in an impressive performance entitled “Beauty and the Beast”!
And of course the boy who didn’t want to grow up, couldn’t be missing either: Peter Pan and his friends. The show piece by the Britta Rasche-Merkt team, the Ferberberg Ballet School and the Lufttanz Theater Berlin.
Once again this year, part of the admission fee was donated to a charity. Carl Meulenbergh, President of the Aachen-Laurensberger Rennverein e.V., presented the Stolberger Charity “MENCHENSKIND®” with a donation cheque for 12,000 Euros this evening.